18 children among 27 killed in US school shooting

FP
Eighteen children were killed on Friday morning in a shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, about 65 miles northeast of New York City, according to a person who had been briefed on the shooting. Another law enforcement official said preliminary reports suggested there could be as many as 20 fatalities.

(Past midnight India time, both AP and Reuters were reporting at least 27 deaths, including the 18 children. School staff were among the dead, police said.)

One state official said that an adult gunman was believed to be dead in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The gunman had at least two firearms, the official said.

A student at the school told an NBC affiliate in Connecticut: "I was in the gym and I heard like seven loud booms, and the gym teachers told us to go in the corner and we huddled. We all heard these booming noises, and we started crying. So the gym teachers told us to go into the office where no one could find us. Then a police officer told us to run outside."

Meredith Artley, managing editor of CNN.com quoted a friend who works at the school: "She said three people went out into the hall and only one person came back, the vice principal, who was shot in the leg or the foot, who came crawling back. She cowered under the table and called 911. She never saw the shooting. There must have been a hundred rounds," Artley said.

State police said the Newtown police called them around 9.40 am (8.10 pm in India), The Associated Press reported. A SWAT team was among the enormous deployment of law enforcement officers who descended on the school. Danbury Hospital, which is not far from the school, said it was treating three patients from the shooting scene, according to its Facebook page.

The school, located among wooded hills and suburban tracts in Fairfield County, 12 miles east of Danbury, serves kindergarten through fourth grade. The school has about 700 students.

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